Saturday, October 3, 2009

How The Grinch Stole Christmas Blu-ray Review

Disc Size: 22.3 GB
Film Size: 19.3 GB
Film Rating: PG
Region: Free

Video
The Grinch comes to Blu-ray with a 1080p VC-1 video presentation. I have to say this is certainly one of the worst looking Blu-ray releases I have personally seen. Rarely did I feel like I was watching a high-def source, what made matters worse is when comparing it to the DVD. It was very difficult to really notice any differences, although there are slight improvements.

Detail was almost non-existant, with the whole presentation covered in a misty foggy look of the film. Colors were good, but also lacked pop because of the look of the film. To be honest though, this felt almost like a DVD upconvert of the film for the majority of the time, although there are a few scenes few and far between that really do look quite improved from DVD.

The film looked flat and was quite lifeless overall, black levels were decent but not as solid as the average Blu-ray release. I honestly don't see how anyone could be impressed visually by this Blu-ray release. The filtered mist look really ruins the look of the film in high-definiton, and it's certainly more than disappointing. I can't help but feel they could have aquired the same feel and look of the film, without the major loss in quality.

Ultimately there is improvement to be found on this Blu-ray release, but it definitely varies from extremely slight to decent. The biggest issue is more with the original source and not the Blu-ray transfer itself, as it's the same problem that plagued both the DVD and HD DVD release as well. If you don't own the DVD and would like to own this movie in your collection, the Blu-ray release is certainly as good as it gets for now, and includes the DVD as well. Just be warned that it can look really ugly at times. 4/10.

Audio
A 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio is included and sounds quite decent. The majority of the film's mix is front heavy, with surround effects here and there. Dialogue was crisp and clear and certainly an improvement from DVD. The film's music was nice, but lacked the aggressive feel it could have had at times.

The track really comes alive when faster paced or exciting scenes are happening, and gets much more dull and lifeless when the Grinch is not featured. There are some moments where the mix could have been used in a more immersive way, but it does it's job just fine. 6/10.

Extras

My Scenes
Save your favorite scenes or share them with your friends over BD-Live.

Spotlight on Location (7:16) (SD)
Behind-the-scenes of the film, features cast and crew interviews as well as look at the sets.

Deleted Scenes (9:27) (SD)

Outtakes (3:17) (SD)
Fairly standard outtakes, some staged for gags.

Who School (5:43) (SD)
Interviews and behind-the-scenes footage of becoming a Who, from the look in general to the stunts.

Makeup Application and Design (6:57) (SD)
All about the makeup effects featured in the film.

Seussian Set Decoration (5:16) (SD)
All about the sets and giving them the authentic Seuss look.

Visual Effects (10:51) (SD)
All about the visual effects of the film, comparing them in both early and final versions.

Music Video: Faith Hill - "Where Are You Christmas?" (4:13) (SD)
A Faith Hill music video which features hair that would make The Grinch proud, although I doubt she was going for that.

Theatrical Trailer (:57) (SD)

Audio Commentary
by Director Ron Howard.

D-Box Motion Code

What's New (BD-Live)
Check out the latest Universal Studios trailers, powered by BD-Live.

DVD Copy of the film

Blu-news Summary
The Grinch is a decent family flick, but I feel it's far from what it could have been. The classic Grinch story is here, but Jim Carrey presents The Grinch in such an overly annoying tone it's hard not to be turned off by the film. Kids should love this though, as it features a nice Christmas story with wacky and dumb humor.

The Blu-ray release itself is mediocre, featuring disappointing video decent audio, and a good amount of bonus features. The Blu-ray release is a great price for both the Blu-ray and DVD, and the perfect purchase for those who don't own the film on DVD already. If you do own the DVD already, it's hard to recommend this release unless your a big fan. 'For Fans Only.'

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